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JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) - One of Missouri's largest labor organizations has hired a former Republican House Speaker as a lobbyist.
The Missouri AFL-CIO hired Steve Tilley this week as the labor organization prepares to combat "right to work" measures this year. The legislation would prohibit labor contracts from requiring that all employees pay union fees.
Tilley was first elected to the House in 2004 and became Speaker in 2011. While in that office he shied away from "right to work" and said it was not part of his agenda.
He left the House in 2012 to become a lobbyist when term limits barred him from seeking re-election.
"Right to work" is a top priority this year of House Speaker Tim Jones, Tilley's successor. Jones says Missouri needs the policy to compete for jobs.
   
 
Published in Local News

   SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) - A labor coalition wants Illinois' pollution control board to waive pollution controls at coal-fired plants being sold by Ameren Corp.

   The AFL-CIO is making its position known hours before the Illinois Pollution Control Board is set to meet in Springfield on Tuesday.

   The AFL-CIO says that move by the board would provide certainty to employers and communities in central and southern Illinois. But environmental groups say pollution upgrades are needed.

   Houston-based Dynegy wants to buy the plants from Ameren, which has a waiver that allowed it to delay installing soot-control equipment at the five plants.

   The board refused to transfer the waiver to Dynegy, saying it must make its own case for a waiver. Dynegy says it will do so.

   The board is expected to make a decision by November.

 
Published in Local News

   SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) - Illinois union leaders are encouraging lawmakers to support a pension reform proposal that they recently agreed on with the state's Senate president.

   A coalition of unions announced Monday that it reached an agreement with Senate President John Cullerton on a possible solution to the state's $97 billion pension crisis.

   Michael Carrigan is the president of the Illinois AFL-CIO. He says the group is trying to ensure fairness for public employees and retirees. The union-backed measure gives workers and retirees a choice of benefit packages.

   Carrigan says the group is asking legislators to oppose a solution that House Speaker Michael Madigan backs. Madigan's plan calls for higher pension contributions from employees and limits on how much in pension benefits retirees may collect.

 
Published in Local News

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